Slagter fighting to get WorldTour lead back in Milan-Sanremo
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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Slagter fighting to get WorldTour lead back in Milan-Sanremo

by VeloNation Press at 9:34 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Milan-Sanremo
 
Renshaw is Team Blanco’s plan B for first spring Classic

Tom Jelte SlagterSantos Tour Down Under winner Tom Jelte Slagter will aim to retake his lead in the UCI WorldTour via a strong performance in Milan-Sanremo this coming Sunday.

The young Dutchman has been named as the lead rider for the Blanco Pro Cycling team and is keen to see what he can in what will be his debut in the race.

He showed a strong climbing ability in the Australian event and with several ramps featuring along the Sanremo route, he believes the race parcours could suit him.

“The short yet steep climbs make this course suitable to me” he said. “We saw those type of climbs in the Tour Down Under, the Tour du Haut-Var and Strade Bianche and I rode them well. I’ll admit that Milan – San Remo is of a different calibre, but with the Tirreno-Adriatico in my system, I have gotten even stronger.”

He said that he had worked out a tactic for La Primavera. “I scouted the last couple of hundred kilometres a few weeks ago. Up to the Passo del Turchino, it’s going to be a fast race,” he explained. “After that, it’s going to be a case of staying alert and staying up front in the climbs. Only then will I have a chance at a good result. I’m going give it a try and see how it all plays out.”

Slagter’s Santos Tour Down Under success got his year off to a very good start. Since then he has ridden well, although not quite at the same level. He was second on stage one of the Tour du Haut Var plus 18th in the final standings, and was also eighteenth in Strade Bianche.

He also finished 27th in Tirreno-Adriatico, but feels he can ride better than that in Sunday’s Classic. If so, he may be able to overtake Porte again and retake the lead in the WorldTour. There are currently just two points between them.

“Last week, I was number one. If you are up there in the rankings, you want to prove that you belong there,” he said, speaking about the competition. “That’s the attitude I am bringing to Milan – San Remo.”

He will be backed by Maarten Tjallingii, Paul Martens, Lars Petter Nordhaug, David Tanner, Tom Leezer, Maarten Wynants and Mark Renshaw, who is himself seen as a potential victor.

“If there is a small breakaway group in one of the climbs, we have a good candidate in Tom-Jelte Slageter,” explained the directeur sportif Nico Verhoeven.

However if it is a big bunch gallop to settle the race, the team has an alternative. “If it should end in a sprint then we are well represented with Mark Renshaw,” he stated.

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